European Parliament outlaws ‘Miss’, ‘Mrs’

Well, no. Though that is what it says if you send this story on using ’email to a friend’. Instead, the Parliament have asked staff to use ‘Ms’ instead. Shock horror!

“Ludicrous”, one Tory MEP told the Daily Mail. “Political correctness gone mad”, he continued. Another, in the Daily Telegraph, branded it a “waste of taxpayers’ money”.

I gotta say, I kind of love the last criticism. Is there just some automatic right-wing
reflex to shout ‘waste of taxpayer’s money’ even when there’s absolutely nothing financial going on?

(Many thanks to all of those who sent this one to me!)

Think again: Blue collars guys and housework/childcare

They do it.  That is, they are better at sharing the housework/childcare than the high-income earners.  And 20% do more than their wives. 

The following remarks on based on the work of the distinguished historian of marriage, Stephanie Coontz.  She is interested in challenging the popular misconceptions in our society about marriage.

Increasing numbers of working class women now — in a downturn where 82 percent of the job losses have been among men – have become their family’s sole wage-earners, it’s true. But their husbands, very often, are holding their own at home just fine. For while the stereotype has long been that working class men won’t do “women’s work,” Coontz said, the truth is that in recent years they’ve had a better track record than the most high-income men in sharing domestic duties. Twenty percent of these men, in fact, actually do more housework and child care now than their wives. “These people have been doing it for some time and they’re much more ideologically committed to doing it,” she said. “I think your worst offenders” … “are in that top 5 percent.”